October 30, 2008

Self-found internal solutions: why they motivate

This week I developed The Solutions Grid. In it, I describe self-found internal solutions by which I mean solutions that the individual (or group) has identified himself and which he can apply himself without the help or training of others and without being dependent on external resources. I believe that the individual or group will be most motivated to this of solutions.

This reminds me of a post I wrote quite a while ago which was called The autonomy-supportive teaching style. In that post I wrote:

"How can intrinsic motivation be stimulated? A critical factor to experiencing intrinsic motivation is perceived autonomy. When people feel autonomous they experience the initiation of their behavior to be within themselves and they become more intrinsically motivated. Any factor that conduces toward a so-called external perceived locus of causality (E-PLOC) will diminish intrinsic motivation. Punishments, rewards and controls are examples of this. They interfere with students' perceived autonomy or put differently, with their self-regulation. Any factor that fosters an internal locus of causality (I-PLOC) will enhance intrinsic motivation. Encouraging self-initiative, providing choice and stimulating experimentation are examples of this."

Do you see the connection?

October 28, 2008

Seeing our predicament as a problem that can be solved

Question: What are you optimistic about, given the state of society at the moment?

Answer: That the processes of enlightenment and reason will continue to drive violence down. That some of the events that we have enjoyed in our lifetimes, that were almost unthinkable beforehand - the fall of the Soviet empire, the end of apartheid, the fact that the Cold War ended without the use of nuclear weapons; if you would have said any of these, the fact that Israel and Egypt are at peace, the fact that the homicide rate has plummeted since the 1990’s in the United States, if you would have made any of those predictions in 1975 or 1985 people would have said, “What are you smoking?” But they all came true. My hope is that an ability to see the future, to think about our predicament, to see our predicament as a problem that can be solved, will lead to more pleasant surprises like that.

~Steven Pinker, see interview here.

October 27, 2008

The Solutions Grid

In response to my previous post, Solution-focused cold-curing?, Michael Hjerth, from Sweden, analyzed my distinction between internal and external solutions, saying:
Both medication and exercise is effective with depression. But exercise has the benefit of "being done" by the client: thus increasing self-regulation and agency. (verified by research CBT and Exercise has more long-term effects compared to medication in most cases). If I convince a person to exercise: thus giving external advice which will increase internal resources, are this internal or external solutions?
I think this is an interesting thought. After reading Michaels comment I made this grid (let's call it The Solutions Grid):

Here is an explanation of the terms. By internal solutions I mean solutions that the individual can apply himself without the help or training of others and without being dependent on external resources. By external solutions I mean solutions that the individual cannot apply without the training or help or resources of others. By found by other(s) I mean that the solution is identified and defined by someone else (for instance a coach, therapist, or consultant). By self-found I mean that the solution is identified and defined by the person himself.

My hypothesis is that the solutions in quadrant D are the most promising. These self-found internal solutions have some important advantages. The individual trusts these solutions, knows how to apply them, knows they're relevant for him and knows he has the skills required to apply them. Furthermore, he has identified them himself and is most likely to be committed to trying them out. My prediction would be that these D-solutions are most likely to be actually tried out and are most durable, too.

What's the link to solution-focused practice? I think solution-focused practice constantly focuses as much as it can by facilitating the person to find internal solutions himself. In other words, it leads to self-found internal solutions. It does this first by acknowledging what the client does as much as possible and by interfering as little as possible with his frame of reference. Solution-focused coaching tries to be as non-obtrusive as possible. Secondly, solution-focused coaching uses activating questions that facilitate the person in his process of finding solutions.

Note: this is not only applicable to individuals but also to groups
Also view this video

October 26, 2008

Solution-focused cold-curing?

In the solution-focused approach you're trying to solve problems and achieve goals by identifying solutions that have already been working and that have originated within the individual or group. Because these solutions can be found within the individual or group itself I like to call these solutions internal solutions. In the solution-focused approach you identify what has worked before and you amplify that. This is opposed to a change approach that relies on external solutions, solutions that come from outside the system (individual or group) like following tips from someone else. The solution-focused approach has shown its use in therapy and coaching but also in organizational development. But can it even be useful in a medical setting? Maybe it can.

In the article Cold 'cure' on the horizon as scientists pinpoint body's natural defences a new approach to curing colds is described. Here is a quote from that article.
The team, including David Proud from the University of Calgary in Alberta and researchers at cold remedy maker Procter & Gamble Co, infected 35 people with human rhinovirus 16, which causes the common cold. Hours after infection, the researchers scraped a little bit of the lining from inside the volunteers' noses and analysed gene activity in the cells. ‘I think that is the ideal approach to trying to treat these viral infections. If you can find out what are the body's natural defences, can you either boost them or supplement them?’ Proud said. ‘The findings are important because they provide us with a blueprint for developing the ideal cold treatment: one that maintains the body's natural antiviral response while normalizing the inflammatory response,’ added P&G's Lynn Jump.
Do you see the parallel? These researchers go for what I call internal solutions, solutions that originate within the system and they then try to amplify them. I don't know what next step they envision. Will they make generic medicine based on what they learn from these studies or will they go even a step further (and thus make the process even more solution-focused) and help individuals by identifying their unique antiviral responses and make individualized treatment based on amplifying these?

October 25, 2008

Dangerous Minds

Yesterday, in a presentation, I was shown a video fragment of Michele Pfeiffer, who played the part of LouAnne Johnson, a teacher in a difficult inner city school. The video showed a situation in which there is palpable tension in the class room. Here is the video, I found it on Youtube. I was particularly interested in the situation in which the teacher is talking to the girl. It starts at 1:42. The girl says the teacher doesn't understand. The teacher asks: "Do you have a choice to get on that bus?" The girl challenges that she actually has a choice. After that, the teacher emotionally explains how the girl in fact has a choice. After that, the students become silent. It is an impressive fragment. The confrontational and convincing style did seem to work in this situation.

A solution-focused approach might have been interesting too, in this situation. In that case, the teacher might have listened, acknowledged what the students would have said and then might have said things like: "Yes, I understand that it must be really hard to live there and to get on that bus every day like you do. And while it is so hard and it would have been easy for you not to get on that bus and to start selling drugs or killing people ... you still manage to get on that bus. ... Can you explain that to me? What makes you decide to get on that bus every day?"

That might have been interesting, too.

Discussions about motives can go on interminably

Motives are typically complicated and only partially visible, so it's easy for them to become the focus of endless speculation, interpretation, soul-searching, and navel gazing. Because motives are mixed and complicated, discussions of what they really should be can go on interminably.

October 22, 2008

How do you say No to a telemarketer positively?

Tess Carolina responded to my post Positive No example saying: "I'd be particularly curious to the telemarketer situation, myself. I do manage to say no, but always wind up feeling guilty about it. When they call, I usually interrupt the introduction, as soon as the person pauses to breathe - however shortly. I will explain how I will seek out a pension expert at a time when I feel the need, and that I currently do not. Trying to remain polite and wishing the person good luck with his work. Still, I always end up feeling sorry for the person having to do this job after hanging up the phone. Again, an example would be appreciated!"

I find this response very interesting. It shows a willingness to be kind and polite while also a desire to be able to say No. Tess asks me for an example and I will try to write one down, soon. Before I do, I would like to get some iput from readers. My question is: How do you say No to telemarketers in a constructive and respectful, yet clear, manner?

October 21, 2008

To forget oneself

In my post Language use and mental health of two days ago it was mentioned that people whose health was improving tend to decrease their use of first-person pronouns in their writings. Thinking about this, I remembered a quote by Robert L. Stevenson, author of Treasure Island:

"In every part and corner of our life, to lose oneself is to be a gainer, to forget oneself is to be happy".

October 20, 2008

Creative genius and age

Malcolm Gladwell writes, in a new article, Late Bloomers: "Doing something truly creative, we’re inclined to think, requires the freshness and exuberance and energy of youth". In particular, we think you have to be in your twenties. This stereotype is unjustified. Gladwell quotes work by University of Chicago economist David Galenson (photo), author of Old Masters and Young Geniuses, who listed top 11 poetry contributions published since 1980 and found they were composed at the ages of 23, 41, 48, 40, 29, 30, 30, 28, 38, 42, and 59, respectively. Galenson concluded that there is no evidence for the notion that lyric poetry is a young person’s game.

October 19, 2008

Positive No example

William Ury has reminded us of the importance of saying No. In this modern world we are continuously bombarded with requests, demands, offers, and information. It would be quite impossible to say Yes to all of those. If we think about we soon realize how often we have to say No. Here a few examples of situations in which saying No is necessary:
  • Saying No as a teacher when a student disrupts class, 
  • Saying No as a supplier to a client when you cannot of don't want to fulfill a demand, 
  • Saying No to an invitation to go somewhere because you don't want to or don't have time, 
  • Saying No to a job applicant because he lacks the qualifications for the job, 
  • Saying No as a manager to an employee who asks to take part in a training program that is not relevant to the work he does, 
  • Saying No to a colleague who asks you to take over some work while you're too busy with your own work, 
  • Saying No to a request to work at a pay rate which is below the rate you have chosen yourself, 
  • Saying No to a telemarketer who calls you at an inconvenient time about a product that does not interest you. 
Earlier, I have describe the Positve No model by William Ury which revolves around the Yes!-No- Yes sequence. Here is a brief and simple example of that model in action.
Mary: "Jim, could you, in your presentation of results oriented management at our conference, also explain the relationship between your topic and the model by van Stephen Covey? His model is very popular within our organization." 
Jim: "I am afraid that would not be such a good idea, Mary. I have heard this topic really lives within your organization so I can imagine you're asking. But I don't really know a lot about that model. For me, it's important to focus my presentations on those things which I really have expertise in. That way, I know what I am talking about and I can deliver a credible presentation. My experience shows that works best for me."

Mary: "Oh.. yes …. I can see your point ….. yes … the reason I thought it would be a good idea is that the people in the audience are really very interested in Covey's model. So, it seemed like a good idea to help them see the relationship between your topic and that model." 
Jim: "I can imagine.… What would you say about inviting them to discuss among each other what the relationship between the two models?"
Mary: (thinks for a few seconds) "…Yes, that might actually even be more fun, too. That way, they'll be encouraged to think about this themselves. Excellent idea!"

Language use and mental health

This week, The New York Times mentioned the work of James W. Pennebaker (also read this post about his work). This University of Texas psychology professor has been doing studies in which he has tried to learn about mental health by counting the use of certain categories of words by people. Here is that NYT article: He Counts Your Words and here is an interesting quote from that article:

"Dr. Pennebaker, a pioneer in the field of therapeutic writing, asked a group of people recovering from serious illness or other trauma to engage in a series of writing exercises. The word tallies showed that those whose health was improving tended to decrease their use of first-person pronouns through the course of the study. Health improvements were also seen among people whose use of causal words — because, cause, effect — increased. Simply ruminating about an experience without trying to understand the causes is less likely to lead to psychological growth, he explained; the subjects who used causal words “were changing the way they were thinking about things.”

The way it is implied here is that this knowledge could be used for diagnostical purposes. But could it work the other way around, too? In other words, can we improve our mental health (and that of our students, children, etc.) by deliberately decreasing some and increasing other words in our (/their) language?

By the way, Keith Petrie, James Pennebaker and Borge Sivertsen have also carried out a linguistic analysis of all the lyrics of the Beatles (here is the article: Things We Said Today: A Linguistic Analysis of The Beatles) and came to this (I guess surprising to some) conclusion: "The findings of this study contrast with some of the popular stereotypes of the Beatles. The first is the commonly held view of Lennon as the more intellectual songwriter and McCartney as the sentimental tunesmith. As Everett (1999) notes, "McCartney is seen as the sentimentalist, nonintellectual working-call craftsman who counts his pay in smiles and moves on to the next project, toiling to get every note just right" (p.10). In fact, the linguistic evidence shows that, while McCartney lyrics are have less negative emotional words than Lennon’s, McCartney’s songs are more intellectually complex and cover a far wider range of perspectives and themes. Lennon’s songs tend to more self-focused and higher in levels of negative emotion.

Interesting.... This gives reason to acknowledge Paul McCartney not only as the most all round talented and accomplished musicalist of The Beatles but also as the best lyricist.

Solution-focused Asperger Syndrome help

A book with the title A Self-Determined Future with Asperger Syndrome was brought under my attention today and it seemed like an interesting thing to mention here (although this is not a therapy site). The book is about a solution-focused approach to helping people with Asperger syndrome. This book illustrates how broadly the solution-focused approach is applied these days. The application of using it with Asperger syndrome is interesting. As the product description says: "The authors highlight how treating AS as a 'problem' is unproductive, and advocate a solution focused approach which recognizes and uses the strengths of people with AS to foster mutual respect and understanding." Often, just the way we look at realities determines whether we view them as problems or not. Surely, people diagnosed can have difficulties with social situations and change. At the same time, they can also be exceptional in their cognitive styles and achievements. So, what do we do? View AS a disorder and 'treat' them or focus on helping them develop a situational arrangement that works for them?

October 16, 2008

Developing achievable goals

We often develop achievable goals step by step. In the early stages our goals are often negatively formulated, abstract and approach-oriented. Only by deliberately developing our goals we can turn them into positive concrete and resultsfocused goals. This is important because negative, abstract and approach-oriented goals are really unachievable. By developing them into positive, concrete and resultsfocused goals they become achievable. We can develop our goals by asking some smart solution-focused questions. Here is a brief article which describes the main idea. Hope you'll like it.

October 14, 2008

You ask a lot of questions, don't you?

A manager was having a first conversation with her solution-focused coach. 15 minutes into the conversation, she suddenly started to smile and said: "You ask a lot of questions, don't you? The coach answered, also with a smile: "Yes, that's right. It helps me to understand better what's important to you." The manager replied: "Okay, I understand but I have to get used to it a bit because it is not exactly what I had expected." The coach replied: "I can imagine.... May I ask you, are the questions I ask useful to you?" The manager thought for a few seconds and then she said: "Yes ... actually ... they are very useful...." The coach asked: "Shall I continue?" She smiled again and said: "Yes, please go ahead!"

October 13, 2008

October 12, 2008

Incubation period

"Creative success requires trial and error, time to make mistakes and correct them -in short, an incubation period during which the new ideas can be safely nurtured."

~ Howard Gardner, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi & William Damon (source)

October 11, 2008

10 questions for the solution-focused coach

Below are some questions you may ask yourself as a solution-focused coach as you collect information from your coachee. The questions can be helpful in adapting yourself to your client and to make the conversation really useful.
  1. What is important to this client?
  2. How does this client view his situation?
  3. What does he want to see changed?
  4. What is his good reason for wanting to see that change?
  5. What does he see as advantages to himself and others of this change?
  6. What strategies has he already employed which have somehow been helpful?
  7. What improvements has he already made?
  8. How far is he already in accomplishing what he wants?
  9. What resources can he draw on?
  10. What is he willing to do and what will he not do?
I made this list based on a list by Insoo Kim Berg (in Family Based Services: A Solution-Based Approach (Norton Professional Books), page 54). I changed her list quite a bit though, based on the seven steps approach.

October 10, 2008

Past-focused why-not questions

The why-not question can be pointed in two directions: to the past and the future. When it's pointed to the future it can be a useful and pleasant question, especially when the tone of your voice is inviting ("why don't you join our club?"). However, when the why-not question is pointed at the past, it can often be a quite useless and sometimes even mean question.

For instance, if you ask someone 'why haven't you done you job like you should have?', what you're doing is asking someone to start telling something negative about himself. You’re inviting him to criticize himself. When you're asking someone why he has not done something right you're placing him in a difficult position. It is important for people to like themselves. Asking them to give negative explanations about their behavior (or worse, their intensions) is asking a lot. The chance it will work is very small. The odds are you'll be evoking a defensive response. And even if the other person is prepared to start criticizing himself, it is still doubtful whether that will be useful. Even if it has become clear why someone has NOT done what he should have done, it will still be doubtful whether that will explain how he will do a good job the next time. Because knowing why something does NOT happen is not the same as knowing why something DOES happen. If someone admits he has forgotten something important, this does not provide an answer to the question how he will be able to remember the next time.

So we'd better be careful with past-focused 'why-not questions'.

October 8, 2008

Positive 'No'

Recently I have been using William Ury's approach to the positive 'no' a lot. Ury says that being able saying 'no' is critical. We are confronted with so much information and so many suggestions and demands that we simply cannot function well without being able to say 'no'. But saying 'no' is hard. If we do it ineffectively, other people may feel offended or rejected or they may view your 'no' as arrogant or uncooperative. So developing the skill of saying 'no' constructively and gracefully is very worthwhile. Ury describes how this can be done. He presents the simple sequence of YES!-NO-YES?

The first step is to root your 'no' in an underlying yes. What is you good reason to say 'no' now. What positive value, interest, intention is behind that 'no'. Ury claims that if you first express your underlying yes, your 'no' will be understood and accepted much easier. After your YES and NO have been delivered, you may come up with a YES? which is an invitation to an alternative solution.

This seems simple doesn't it? Yet, when explaining this approach to trainees I am often surprised how hard most people find it. They don't find it hard to understand but they do find it hard to apply. To parts are usually considered the hardest: 1) to simply answer to yourself what it is you are saying 'no' to. Many people somehow distort what is actually asked of them and make their own version of the question or demand that is posed to them. With the positive 'no' approach however, you stick to the original question or demand as it was formulated by the other person. 2) the second thing many people find hard to do is to make their underlying YES explicit. It really takes patience to find those underlying values and principles.

The positive 'no' approach fits wonderfully with the solution-focused approach. It also shares this characteristic with the solution-focused approach: it seem easier than it is. Fortunately, once people learn how to apply it, they usually find it very very useful. Maybe soon, I'll post an example of how to say 'no' positively.

October 7, 2008

Visualizing progress continued - watching the trendline

In an earlier post (Visualizing progress: expect fluctuation and watch the trendline) I claimed that progress hardly ever happens in a straight line. Whatever it is you try to measure there will always be fluctuation. Sometimes there may be rapid change, at other times there will fallbacks. And sometimes these fallbacks are severe. At these times of serious fallbacks it is often easy to get discouraged. When serious fallbacks happen, we tend to think that our efforts have been in vain and we lose heart. In that earlier post I suggested two things: 1) It is normal for progress to show this kind of fluctuation, and 2) The trendline is an important line to watch. This line shows you that there is actual growth overall. The trendline is a very motivating line to watch.

Today, I came across a real life example. It is a picture of the development of the Dutch AEX index. The picture depicts a band of 5% growth since the beginning of the 1980's. These days there is much talk about the financial crisis. Indexes are taking heavy blows. Panic seems to be just around the corner. But, as we see, the current value of the AEX is at a decent historical average (source).

October 6, 2008

Standing out of the client's sunlight

Diogenes was Greek philosopher who lived in the fourth century BC. He advocated a life of sobrietry and of virtuous action. The story goes that Alexander The Great was a great admirer of him and that he traveled a long distance to meet the philosopher.

When Alexander met him, Diogenes was sitting on the ground enjoying the sun. Alexander told the philosopher how much he admired him and asked him: "Tell me what you want and I will gladly give it to you." The philosopher replied: "Yes, stand out of my sunlight."

This story reminds me of what happens in solution-focused coaching. At least part of what happens in solution-focused coaching seems to be to keep from getting in the sunlight of our clients.

October 5, 2008

Finding and using positive meaning

Here is a quote from the article mentioned in this post:
We suggest that finding positive meaning may be the most powerful leverage point for cultivating positive emotions during times of crisis. People can find positive meaning in daily life by reframing adverse events in a positive light, infusing ordinary events with positive value, and pursuing and attaining realistic goals.
Also read: Meaning in life

October 4, 2008

Positive emotions in crises

During these days of financial crises, this seems like a good article to reread: What are positive emotions during crises? It might be useful.

Thanks to Gwenda Schlundt Bodien for reminding me of this article.

October 3, 2008

Finding merit in people's reasons

"Many people fear that appreciating someone's point of view is equivalent to agreeing with them. Wrong. Whether or not you agree with someone, you can find merit in their reasoning and let them know. You give up none of your authority to decide; you can still say yes or no to proposals and increase the likelihood that the two of you will be able to work together effectively. It is possible to understand a person's ideas or opinions that you think are foolish or patently wrong. It is also possible to understand, for example, arguments that you believe are weighty, important, and deserving attention even if you happen to disagree with them or feel that they are outweighted by other factors. Communicating that you understand is quite different from saying, 'I agree with you' or 'I will do what you suggest'."

~ Roger Fisher & Daniel Shapiro, Beyond Reason: Using Emotions as You Negotiate (p 37)

October 2, 2008

Progress-focused directing (case)

A manager working at a housing association, Robert, who was dissatisfied with a contractor who worked for him, sent this email about how he had dealt with this situation. He had carefully prepared his meeting with the contractor so that he would manage to remain both clear about his expectation and friendly. Apparently he succeeded. Here is his e-mail.

“As a manager of the department Daily Maintenance, I have to deal with several contractors who do repair work for us. One of these contractors, a plumbing company, frequently did not deliver their work according to the agreements. Several conversations with the supervisor and with the director of that company had failed to lead to improvement. Sometimes, things were better for a week, but then they fell back into their old bad habits. After multiple failures to work according to agreement I invited the director (John) of the plumbing company for a meeting. Before the meeting I had thought well about what my goal should be. In the past, I tended to get emotional in these kinds of situations. Now, I was determined to remain cool and focused on my goal. John arrived on time for our meeting and I gave him a tour through our entrance hall which had just been rebuilt. After that, I quickly got down to business. I started off as follows: “John, I want very much to keep on working with your company. To make our collaboration successful it will be necessary for you to stick to your agreements with our tenants. How can you take care that in the future you will stick to the agreements?" He said that he would really like to continue to work for us and that he would specifically tell his employees what our expectations are and how important it is for us that they be met. He would discuss this right away with his employees and he was determined to no longer tolerate any excuses from his him. He assured me that it would not happen again and we agreed that there would be no more complaints from tenants at all this year about not sticking to agreements. We shook hands and ended the conversation. After the conversation, I felt good about it because I had never before been able to get these kinds of promises from him. Often, in the past, he would have beaten about the bush and would cleverly have used my emotions against me. Two weeks after our meeting John had had a conversation with my director and he passed along compliments to about with how I had done the conversation. He told her the meeting had been brief, clear and to the point and that he really appreciated this. Until now we have not had any complaints of tenants anymore!”

October 1, 2008

A situational model of solution-focused change

Together with my colleague Gwenda Schlundt Bodien, I developed a model describing four different types of situations requiring different solution-focused roles. We call it the 4SFC-model (four solution-focused competencies model). Here is that model and below it is a brief explanation.
Below is an explanation of the two dimensions:
  • Internal goals: goals that originate from within the indiviual or group.
  • External goals: goals that originate from outside of the individual of the group (for instance organizational goals).
  • Internal solutions: solutions that originate from within the individual or group.
  • External solutions: solutions that originate from outside of the individual or group.

Here is a brief description of the four solution-focused roles:

  • Helping: this role is required when the purpose of the session is to facilitate an individual or group to find their own solutions in order to make progress in the direction of their own choice. This is role is required most frequently by therapists and coaches (who have no direct interest in the outcome of the process).
  • Directing: this role is required when the purpose of the session is to take care that the individual or group will meet the requirements of some superimposed goal. This role is most frequently appropriate for managers, teachers and customers, in other words people who have an interest in the outcome and the authority to interfere with the work of the individual or group and have the right to put certain demands on them.
  • Training: this role is required when the purpose of the session is to make available external solutions (knowledge, skills, problem solving approaches) for individuals or groups in order for them to use it to achieve their own goals. The solution-focused trainer has no interest in the outcome and will not interfere with to what extent or in what manner the trainee will eventually use the solutions.
  • Instructing: this role is required when the purpose of the session is to clarify the required outcome of the session and the way the outcome has to be achieved. This role is most frequently used by managers and mentors or teachers in situations in which the individual or group can not be expected to already have internal solutions. An example is a manager explaining a procedure to a new employee.

Most solution-focused literature is situated in the therapy or coaching context and therefore describes the role of helping. So it is no surprise that solution-focused helping is the most familiar application. But the other three roles can also be done in a solution-focused manner. Here are a few (non-exhaustive) lists of techniques that may be useful:

  • Directing: well formed goals (goals which are formulated in concrete positive results terms), using questions to provide direction (how can you ....(requirement).... so that .... (positive reason to ask this), identifying, appreciating and using what is already there, working with what comes back to you, acknowledging what the individual or group is saying, inviting small steps, leading patiently and persistently, creating an expectation of positive change, normalizing, reframing.
  • Training: the usefulness question, the platform technique (identifying and using what is already there), the earlier successes question, working with what comes back to you, approaching resistance as cooperation, creating an expectation of positive change, the leapfrogging technique, for instance by means of the solution-focused time quake.
  • Instructing: using well formed goals, creating an expectation of positive change, the platform technique, working with what comes back to you, acknowledging and validating what the other person says, using the words of the other person

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